Author: Robert Farley

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The Force

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In General
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On December 14, 2017
The Last Jedi opens tonight to very respectable reviews.  We should, of course, be suspicious of this; Phantom Menace and Attack of the Clones opened to respectable enough reviews, and are now appropriately reviled.  Revenge of the Sith was probably a touch underrated at the time, although I appreciate that this is a controversial appraisal.  […]
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South African Nukes

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In General
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On December 7, 2017
At the National Interest I have a quick explainer on the South African nuclear weapons program: The Republic of South Africa is the only country in the world to build a nuclear weapons program, then unbuild that program after domestic and international conditions changed. Why did South Africa decide to build nukes, how did it […]

Indo-Pacific

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On December 6, 2017

I ruminate a bit about the term “Indo-Pacific” over at the Diplomat: The term was found in print in contemporary usage in 1993 (and again by Gurpreet S. Khurana in 2007), to describe th

Air, Cyber, Space

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On December 5, 2017

A couple weeks ago I had the chance to jabber with Mark Duckenfield of the Army War College about independent services; space, cyber, and air.  Long story short, the logic that gets you an independen

Long Range PLAAF

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On December 4, 2017

Some thoughts at the Diplomat on the evolution of China’s long-range air capabilities: A recent RAND report highlighted the problems facing the PLAAF, as well as its effort to develop solution

Gutting State

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On November 29, 2017

Some thoughts at the Diplomat on Tillerson’s bonfire: A recent Vanity Fair report on the Rex Tillerson-led State Department made for harrowing reading.  The workforce at State is shrinking,

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At the Diplomat I have some thoughts on future competition between China and the US over arms sales: U.S. market position depends on two factors; the technological superiority of U.S. equipment, and the political value in establishing a defense relationship with the United States. Historically, China arms export strategy has been built around exploiting the […]
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